herald

Monday 11 December 2017

GAA plans grand new entrance to Croke Park

PLANS are afoot to carry out a major new development of Croke Park which will see the construction of a grand new entrance to the stadium.

The GAA has put forward proposals which will see it demolish a 1960s flat complex to allow for it to develop a "processional entrance" to Croke Park.

The organisation hopes to renew its plans to demolish an estate of 79 flats called Croke Villas, which it says remain in an "appalling condition".

The plans, which depend on the GAA purchasing the piece of land from Dublin City Council, will also see a number of new facilities being developed including a handball centre.

The plans collapsed in December 2008 with the city council stating two years later that it was "extremely unlikely that Croke Villas will be redeveloped in the foreseeable future".

However, it has emerged today that the proposals are back on the table and will see the GAA acquiring the land in question from the council.

The organisation wants to build a grand new entrance to Croke Park, as well as developing new office facilities and a handball centre.

If given the green light, the GAA will demolish the flats and widen Sackville Avenue which will allow it to provide a boulevard or processional entrance to the stadium.

"Croke Villas was, is and continues to remain in an appalling condition, so we decided to see could we conceivably do something to help to change that," said Croke Park stadium director Peter McKenna.

The GAA said that the new entrance would be the only one used on match days and take crowds away from neighbouring streets.

A new 'urban village' will be located nearby, which the GAA says will be used for a number of commercial and local enterprise activities.

The GAA has claimed that the current centre is "derelict" and that the new development will result in valuable employment to the local area.

However, the organisation still faces a tough task in securing the support of local councillors.

hnews@herald.ie

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